Sucrose ester and ether products, useful as food or beverage bulking agents, reduced calorie sweeteners, fat replacement agents, stabilizing agents, thickening agents and emulsifying agents; adhesives; biodegradable plastics and films; sizing agents for paper and textiles; ethical pharmaceuticals and new fibers are prepared by using a two-phase reaction system in which sucrose is dissolved in an alkaline, aqueous solution and an acidic reagent such as a bifunctional acid dichloride or epoxide is added to the sucrose in a water-immiscible organic solvent. Several types of products are produced: water-insoluble sucrose ester (ether) copolymers; water-soluble sucrose ester (ether) copolymers; sucrose ester (ether) dimers; and intramolecular, cyclic sucrose esters (ethers). These products can be further varied by using different kinds of acid dichlorides or epoxides that contain different kinds of functional groups. The reaction proceeds at the interface of the water/organic solvent solutions whereby there is imparted a specificity that restricts the reaction to the 6 and 6' primary alcohol groups of sucrose. The reactions can be selected for each of the four basic types of products by controlling the various reaction parameters.